Frequently Asked Questions
Pick-Up Time CSA share pick-ups will be once a week, every Thursday from 3:30-6:00 pm. If that time doesn’t work for you, members are also welcome to pick up their shares when the farm store is open.
Pick-Up Style. The majority of our vegetables will be pre-harvested and set out market-style under our pavilion or in the farm store once the weather turns cooler. Members will fill their shares based on what's available and abundant. We will provide guidelines about how much of each crop to take. Members take either 8 (small share) or 12 (large share) items each week, of whatever composition they want.
What's an item? Our latest way to provide flexibility to share members. You can mix and match depending on what your menu will be that week. Think, 1 bunch kale, 1 lb potatoes, 1 pint cherry tomatoes, etc. You can mix, match, and double up on items as you wish.
Pick-Your-Own Gardens! We are also excited to incorporate pick-your-own (PYO) harvesting into our CSA membership. This works best for certain produce, like cherry tomatoes, peppers, herbs, cut flowers, and string beans. PYO helps us out a lot by lessening the amount of up-front work we must do to prepare our CSA shares. It also means we don't over or under harvest, which reduces our waste. We also know that many of our members love the chance to spend time in our gardens and hoop houses, hanging out with the plants, and picking their favorite foods. We see this as great opportunity for members to get to know us and the farm a little bit better. We will have some PYO crops pre-harvested for those who don't have time during the pick-up window.
Meat Share Add-On. Purchase a Meat Add-On to your Veggie Share. A variety of cuts will be available, including: Shoulder roast, chuck roast, shank steaks (braising), sirloin steaks, rib eye, T-bone, short ribs, ground beef, as well as sausage and bacon. Cuts will be prioritized for CSA members over farm store sales. We also include pastured chicken and lamb from neighboring farms, and line-caught wild salmon from a sustainable fishermen who we trust.
Recipes & Storage Information. We are committed to helping our members use and enjoy all of their food. Friend of the farm and integrative medicine practitioner Jessica Morrison will be sharing recipes inspired by each week's share. Members will also have access to our library of past CSA inspired recipes, organized by vegetable. In addition, we usually offer a weekly sample that often features our meat.
Packaging. Part of our motivation to consolidate our CSA pick-up into a weekly event is to reduce packaging. We encourage members to bring reusable bags and containers to fill up with veggies!
I already buy your food at the Farm Store - why join the CSA? CSA models offer greater stability for farmers. When folks who eat from the farm join our CSA, it makes crop and animal herd planning much easier, and it gives us greater financial stability throughout the season. Moreover, the CSA model gives us the opportunity to get to know our eaters on a deeper level, and share our experience as farmers. We urge those who love our food to be a part of our CSA.
I'm missing a week for vacation OR I just don't feel like making it out the door - what will happen to my share? Since our share composition is very flexible, members are welcome to come pick-up their share any time the Farm Store is open, or simply double up another week to make up for weeks missed.
I have dietary restrictions; I don't eat nightshades; I just don't like beets! Should I still join? Yes! Our shares are very flexible, you can basically take whichever vegetables you want. This is an ideal share for folks with dietary restrictions.
Isn't eating meat 'bad' for the environment? We don't think so -- in fact, we believe the opposite. But, it's all in how you do it. Large scale, industrially raised meat where animals are kept in CAFOs (Confined Animal Feeding Operations) has a lot of negative impacts on animal well-being, environmental health, meat quality and nutrition. Animals raised on land, in balance with the surrounding ecosystem have the opposite effect. Our animals are cared for in ways that are consistent with their natural patterns, as part of intact and diverse perennial ecosystems. The resulting meat is highly nutritious and tastes excellent. Learn more about our animal husbandry practices here.
Do you grow all of the food in the CSA? We raise grass-fed beef and an array of organic vegetables and herbs. We also occasionally include value-added products like pesto, and hope to expand this in the future. For some crops that are difficult to grow on our clay soils or difficult for us to store in our facilities, we source from nearby farms with whom we have a relationship.
What are your veggie cultivation practices? We grow most of our vegetables in three unheated hoop houses, which allow us to grow year round, even through the coldest of Vermont winters. All of our vegetables are certified organic, which means that we never use synthetic fertilizers or chemicals. We also work at a small enough scale to be able to do all of our labor by hand, and don't use a tractor or any mechanical cultivators to grow our veggies.
This past season we were thrilled to expand our vegetable production into our first outdoor garden, which we created by sheet mulching (adding many layers of) composted soil and wood-chips onto part of our home pasture. This outdoor garden, affectionately known as the "keyline garden", because of it's design which follows the contour of the pasture, has so much organic matter and woody material that it does an excellent job of regulating moisture and providing nutrients to the growing plants. We began by planting vegetables in this garden, but hope to eventually transition to perennials and perhaps even fruit and nut trees, once the soil ecology becomes more ideal for these longer lived plants. In the coming years, we also hope to expand these outdoor "keyline gardens" to weave through our pastures, allowing our animals to graze in between them. For now, we are loving the opportunity to garden outside and to experiment with different vegetables and a different environment.